I carried the central idea for this one around for years before I worked out how to make it work. The idea of reducing emotions to increase intellect is hardly a new one and I imagined all sorts of stories that felt flat before I even began to write them. From the beginning, I’d imagined a treatment that would make the exchange a permanent one. It was only when it occurred to me to adjust the idea that I was able to develop a sensible story. If the process could be reversed, I had a conflict to build a story around.
For the conflict to work, I needed a character who would fight against the return of emotion and a character who would be strongly motivated to force its return. Mary and Gareth grew into those roles. Somewhere in the process, I found I liked the idea of a character who would do something as appalling as kidnapping his ex-girlfriend and handcuffing her to a bed, but do it for very good reasons. That was when I knew I had to start filling sheets of paper.
The Endocrine Tyranny was published by Buzzy, July 2012, where the full text is still available.
It is also part of the Steel in the Morning collection.